The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers Image
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

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7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

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  • Summary: During the Vietnam War, an unassuming man named Daniel Ellsberg made a judgment call that would ignite a political controversy. He leaked top secret documents known as "The Pentagon Papers" in hopes of exposing the American public to the truth about the war.

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Anyone with any doubt as to the importance, in a functioning democracy, of American newspapers - with working newsrooms full of professional, paid journalists - needs to see this movie.
  2. Suffers from several goofily tacky animated reenactments and a music score that unnecessarily underlines the significance of key events, but for those who lived through the turmoil of Vietnam, and for the generations that have come since, the film is an important document in its own right.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    88
    Ends on a note of triumphant populism, but the film’s bitter aftertaste hints that when we ignore the details, we only ensure they’ll be repeated.
  4. 75
    The film sometimes feels like the kid brother of “Fog of War,” Errol Morris’s far more compelling account of the mind of Robert McNamara, Ellsberg’s one-time boss. There’s reality and depth here, but a chill, too, that the filmmaking never quite manages to melt.
  5. 70
    Makes a few distracting embellishments--re-enactments (some shabbily animated), melodramatic cloak-and-dagger scoring--but in the main, it's a professional job, standing above the crowd of politico documentaries that proliferate like kudzu over arthouse screens.
  6. 70
    On the spectrum from heroic patriot to craven traitor, this detailed, clearly told and persuasive film, directed by Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith, is firmly on the side of heroic.
  7. 60
    His “treason” gave credence to ending the war, helped push a corrupt administration toward its ruin and underlined the importance of the First Amendment. Rickety doc or not, Ellsberg deserves every ounce of hero worship he gets here.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Dec 4, 2010
    8
    The title is not as clear as it may sound. The Most Dangerous Man In America... is about the war of Vietnam and how Daniel Ellsberg gave theThe title is not as clear as it may sound. The Most Dangerous Man In America... is about the war of Vietnam and how Daniel Ellsberg gave the public a whole new view of the war. The documentary gathered lots of facts that had been buried for years and delivered the facts quite elegantly. Daniel Ellsberg appeared in the film telling his own story. From when he leaked the top secret documents to the time when he made President Nixon resigned. The Most Dangerous Man In America: Daniel Ellsberg and The Pentagon Papers is an elegant documentary with a great storytelling of what exactly happened during the Vietnam War. Collapse

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